Harper Wells, a senior at Axtell Community School, has been named the winner of the Letters About Literature contest for the high school age division. Letters About Literature is a national reading and writing promotion program for children and young adults. It is sponsored by Nebraska Center for the Book, Nebraska Library Commission, Humanities Nebraska, Houchen Bindery Ltd, and Chapters Bookstore.
On April 2, 2018, Harper was invited to the Nebraska State Capitol for the Proclamation Signing in the Warner Senate Chamber to receive her award from Governor Pete Ricketts. From there she traveled to the Nebraska Club to have lunch with some of the contest judges and members of the Nebraska Library Commission. She was also given a scholarship award during this gathering. The final meeting location was the Heritage Room of Nebraska Authors at Bennett Martin Public Library in Lincoln. Here, Harper was able to sign her letter so that it could be filed with past winners.
Participants in the contest were asked to select and read a book about which they had strong feelings. Next, they were asked to imagine sitting down with the author and having a personal conversation about the book and the reader’s reaction. Harper’s letter was written to author Harper Lee and was a reflection on the book To Kill a Mockingbird. Letters were judged on audience, format, purpose, originality, and grammatical conventions. As the Nebraska winner, Harper’s letter will now advance to national level judging.
Harper is the daughter of Mitch and Kari Wells of Axtell.